Batman: Mask of the Phantasm 4K
review by Bobby Blakey
Throughout the years Batman has been taking on the knight on the big and small screen. In 1993 the popular animated TV show, Batman: The Animated Series made the transition to the big screen with Batman: Mask of the Phantasm featuring the voices of Dana Delany, Mark Hamill, Stacy Keach, Abe Vigoda, Efrem Zimbalist Jr. and the late Kevin Conroy in his iconic role as Bruce Wayne/Batman. Now to celebrate the 30th Anniversary of the classic film Warner Bros is giving it the well-deserved 4K treatment.
Batman: Mask of the Phantasm follows the city's most feared gangsters being systematically eliminated and assumed blame falling on the Caped Crusader. But prowling the Gotham night is a shadowy new villain, the Phantasm, a sinister figure with some link to Batman's past. Can the Dark Knight elude the police, capture the Phantasm and clear his own name? Unmasking the Phantasm is just one of the twists in this dazzling animated feature, which provides new revelations about Batman's past, his archrival the Joker, and Batman's most grueling battle ever - the choice between his love for a beautiful woman and his vow to be the defender of right.
Like most I loved Batman: The Animated Series. The late Kevin Conroy became the quintessential Batman to most fans even to this day. As great as the series was I was still worried when they decided to make a feature film fearing that it would delude everything that the series was doing so well in the shorter form. Taking inspiration from the story arcs of both Batman: Year One and Year Two it managed to not only live up to the series, but end up being something pretty great all on its own.
Revisiting it for God knows how many times was just a great as the first time. It holds up to perfection on all fronts from the brilliant voice work
from Conroy and Hamill to the dark story featuring some elements of Wayner/Batman we don’t see all that often. I love the character of Phantasm but was always bummed they didn’t use the Reaper character it was clearly based on for whatever reason, but still a cool vibe overall.
This new release looks outstanding transferred into glorious 4K giving it the crisp and vibrant look it deserves. Part of the charm of the show has always been that gritty look and that is still here, but lends itself well to the digital upgrade. Even without this new version the film still holds up and one of the best Batman flicks to be made, but glad we have gotten this upgrade of the classic tale.
In addition to the iconic feature film this release offers up bonus content including bonus episodes of Justice League Unlimited and the all-new featurette “Kevin Conroy: I Am The Knight”. Grab your copy of Batman: Mask of the Phantasm available now 4K for the first time ever.